Have you every party wiped a party without wiping the party? Well, I am one of the proud dms to have done so. "How do you do something like that?" you ask. Read on my young (assuming your younger than me, other wise substitute young with older) padawan.

The players were still dealing with the goblins and dwarves when, in the middle of the night, the players woke in a cold, cold sweat and a smell that bordered on rotten limburger cheese laced with a slight overtone of oak. Goblins were ransacking their belongings! Well to make a long story short(er), the king was in on all of this. Yup, he is one greedy, evil, traitorous, conniving, self serving and most of all, ugly son of a gun. He had some of the players stuff stolen, mainly the glass globe they possessed. Keeping the globe plus some of the player's money and giving the rest to some goblins, he then showed the goblins how to get into the dwarf's hidden caves to go into the pcs room. Mind you, by letting the goblins into the dwarven caves, the king endangered every single man, woman and child in his domain.

The players chased the couple goblins they saw and captured one of them. Now before they could ask the goblin some implicating questions, the king showed up and using his over the top super king powers, confiscated the goblin. He then later told the players a fabricated stories of what happened to get them to take care of the goblins. The premise of the story was this, "Goblins stole your stuff! Get them!"

Now here, I have to give my players some props. I'm thinking a cardboard tree, some fake snow, a left shoe and maybe, if I'm feeling generous, an old guitar. Now after giving them props, I have to wonder if it was just them being cynical or just trusting in the dm to do something like I did. Their immediate response to all of this was whether the goblins or the dwarves stole their stuff. Quick thinking on their part! The plan they came up with after hashing that out went something like this: get rid of the goblins and if we don't find our stuff there, well, we start on the dwarves.

The players started to implement their plan. Screaming like howler monkeys they ran into the face of the beast! Actually, they were as quite as possible and won their first encounter with the goblins. The second battle, however, did not go so well.

Imagine a cave.  Imagine it being five goblins wide. Now imagine having enough goblins to to fill that cave two deep with goblins. Lastly, commit to running head long into that line. The players quickly found themselves surrounded. In the ensuing rounds, the paladin was stunned and then proceeded to miss his saves for the next few rounds. It seemed the dice did not favor the wizard or fighter any better light either. Unable to heal their brother in arms, they left him to find peace and bugged the heck out of there! So shook up from that fight, they kept running down the dark, dank, dismal cave and haven't been seen since.

It was at that point the players decided that without that specific paladin character, the group dynamics wouldn't work like they wanted. To put it another way, where are they going to find an insane paladin that is just as crazy as the rest of the group and the paladin's crazy doesn't provoke the other crazies?

The plans for next adventure is to start with new characters and keep the same world. I'm thinking anywhere between ten and fifty years after this campaign. Anyone know how long a zombie apocalypse lasts? My guess, longer than fifty years.

What went well:
  • I feel the players really engaged with the world. They were a rather quirky group so that engagement was a little odd, but they did engage.
  • My plot panned out better than I thought it would. It was nice to see the players hypothesizing about who stole their stuff and coming up with a plan to take it all into account.
  • I had used a few monsters I had found online. It was nice to throw stuff at the players they haven't seen before.
The meh:
  • The players decided to start over. I think they were happy with everything, they just wanted to try new stuff and this was a good excuse. Works for me.
  • A pc died. It happens and I think it is both good and bad. Good because it makes the players seem more mortal and apt to keep there characters from doing too many crazy things. Bad because it's a fair amount of time put into a character to have it all disappear in a random cave to a random goblin to a random dice roll.
I am having a hard time coming up with things that went horribly wrong, though. Everyone had fun, including me and everyone walked away from the night happy. Good times.

Next week, the beginning of the end's end.

Comments (0)